The University of Colorado School of Medicine
and the University of Colorado Colorado Springs announced today that they will launch
a Strong Communities for Children program in Colorado Springs.
Strong Communities for Children approach is a neighborhood-based strategy
proposed by the U.S. Advisory Board on Child Abuse and Neglect when it issued a
landmark report 20 years ago that proclaimed a national emergency in the
that time, the approach recommended by the board was implemented in Greenville,
S.C. The result was stronger community engagement with thousands of volunteers
from hundreds of organizations, safer children, parents with better support,
and a significant decrease in reports of child maltreatment.
Communities engages many people who may not think of themselves as people whose
job it is to protect children or strengthen families,” said Gary Melton, PhD,
associate director for community development and social policy at the Kempe
Center for the Prevention and Treatment of Child Abuse and Neglect and a
professor of pediatrics at the School of Medicine.
Communities is a preventive intervention that mobilizes entire communities to
work together to ensure that every child and every parent know that if they
have a reason to celebrate, worry, or grieve, someone will notice, and someone
will care,” Melton said.
project, which will be based on the University of Colorado Colorado Springs
campus under the leadership of Provost Mary Coussons-Read and Associate
Professor of Public Affairs Katie Kaukinen, will focus on enhancing support for
families with young children by strengthening neighbor-to-neighbor assistance.
The goal is to ensure that every child and every parent know they have support
available in settings they go every day, such as school, workplaces, child-care
centers and places of worship.
U.S. Advisory Board’s leaders re-convened this week in Aurora and Colorado
Springs to commemorate the release of its report. The events were organized by
the Kempe Center for Prevention and Treatment of Child Abuse and Neglect, which
is housed on the Anschutz Medical Campus.